OTTAWA (Reuters) - The Canadian armed forces recruitment website was hacked on Thursday, redirecting would-be recruits to the Chinese government's main page instead, a military spokeswoman said.

Visitors to the forces.ca/en/home page found themselves on the www.gov.cn site instead, CTV television reported. The armed forces quickly took down the page.

Defense ministry spokeswoman Ashley Lemire confirmed the site had been hacked. She said the military was probing the incident but did not know who was responsible.

Canadian security officials have long complained about what they say are frequent attempts by foreign hackers to penetrate secure government computer systems.

In 2014, Canada's then Conservative government took the unusual step of singling out Chinese-based hackers for attacking a key computer network and lodged a protest with Beijing.

Canada's Liberal government, which took power a year ago, is trying to boost trade relations with China.

(Reporting by David Ljunggren; Editing by Alistair Bell)